The Bangladesh Bank has asked all individuals and institutions operating in the country to refrain from dealing in virtual assets and currencies, including Cryptocurrency.
In a circular on Thursday, the central bank also prohibited all to provide any kind of facilitation in favour of businesses, activities, and operations associated with virtual assets or currencies.
"An instruction regarding the issue was made earlier through a circular. The latest circular clarifies it in detail. All banks, non-bank financial institutions and mobile financial service providers such as bKash and Nagad are prohibited from exchanging, transferring or trading virtual assets and currencies," a senior official of the Bangladesh Bank told The Business Standard.
The circular said, "Any transactions made in/from/to Bangladesh for obtaining virtual assets or its subset- virtual currencies, are not permitted by Bangladesh Bank. Providing any kind of facilitation in favour of doing business, activities, and operations associated with exchange/transfer/trading of virtual assets or virtual currencies, are not permitted, as well."
"All individuals/entities/institutions operating in Bangladesh shall refrain from dealing in virtual assets, virtual currencies and providing any kind of facilitation in favour of doing business, activities, and operations associated with exchange/transfer/trading of virtual assets or virtual currencies," it reads.
The circular warned that one who will make transactions in such unauthorised currencies may face financial loss or legal punishment.
"Any such transaction in defiance of the instructions shall be a punishable offence punishable under section 23(1) of the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act. There is an opportunity to sue under this section. 7 years of imprisonment or fine or both as punishment can be applied."
Thursday's circular also mentioned various issues including the opinion of the financial action task force working to prevent money laundering and the provisions for transactions in authorised currencies under the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act.